On Monday, December 9th, New Zealand’s White Island experienced a violent volcanic eruption. Forty-seven people were confirmed to be on the island at the time, and so far, there have been eight confirmed deaths.
New Zealand’s military is only just starting a mission to recover the bodies of victims seven days after the eruption, primarily due to safety concerns. There was tremendous public backlash to this waiting period, as the public, primarily the families of victims, wanted to recover the bodies as soon as possible. The expedition will commence Friday with New Zealand defense force personnel taking charge, with local police providing some assistance. The nation’s geological science agency gave a prediction that the chance of another eruption on Friday is around fifty to sixty percent. The operation will continue nonetheless, however.
The White Island Volcano is the island nation’s most active cone volcano and was built up over the course of 150,000 years of volcanic activity. The island itself is a popular tourist destination, but after this horrific event that has left so many people seriously injured, it might not be the most popular vacation spot for a little while.